National Cathedral is a Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul in Washington, D.C.
The cathedral is at Massachusetts and Wisconsin avenues. It is an associate member of the Washington Theological Consortium. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In 2007, it was ranked third on the List of America’s Favorite Architecture by the American Institute of Architects.
• It is the sixth-largest cathedral in the world and the second-largest in the United States.
• It took 83 years, from 1907 to 1990 to complete the cathedral.
• The Cathedral is visited by about 700,000 visitors and worshipers annually.
• The exterior of the Cathedral is almost the length of two football fields.
• There are 53 bells and largest of the carillon weighs 24,000 pounds and measures eight feet, eight inches in diameter.
• There are 110 gargoyles on the Cathedral.
• The largest window is of stained glass and is 26 feet in diameter.
Both Types of Bells
The bells are integral to Churches and National Cathedral’s central is the only place in North America to house both peal and carillon bells in its central tower.
The Protestant Episcopal Cathedral Foundation operates and funds the cathedral. In 2011, the cathedral received $700,000 in federal funds.
National House of Prayer
Washington National Cathedral is the “National House of Prayer”. During World War II, monthly services were held there “on behalf of a united people in a time of emergency”.
The building has hosted other major events, both religious and secular, that have drawn the attention of the American people. They are
1. Funerals for three American Presidents, Dwight Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford.
2. Memorial services for presidents Warren G. Harding, William Taft, Calvin Coolidge, Harry S Truman, and Richard M. Nixon.
3. Presidential prayer services for Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1937, Ronald Reagan in 1985, George H.W. Bush in 1989, George W. Bush in 2001 and 2005, and Barack Obama in 2009.
4. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered the final Sunday sermon of his life, just a few days before his assassination and a memorial service for King was held at the cathedral later the same week.